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Twins in Death: Chapter One – Part One

Twins in Death

A Tale of The Weirdo

By Brett N. Lashuay

 

Introduction

 

            That The Weirdo has an important place in the history of our society is not disputed by anyone. He came to prominence during a tumultuous time in our shared history, and was instrumental in the fall of empires and the rise of our current way of life. What is often misunderstood, however, is the very central role he played in those historic events. We hope to show in this history that without his intervention things would have turned out significantly differently than they subsequently did.

 

            In this first book we see how he met people who later became some of the most famous heroes of the New Imperial Republic and how his actions sculpted many of them to the greatness they would later achieve.

 

 

Chapter One: The Ballad of Captain Scourge

 

 

 

 

March 10th, 2002

11:22 a.m.

 

            His name was Captain Scourge, and he was a super villain.

 

            He would like that, to be introduced that way. At least we assume he would,  anyway. There isn’t a lot known about him, but his actions tell us a few things. His name isn’t recorded in any report, and no one ever came forward claiming to have known him. The fact that no identification was ever made was still a fairly odd thing to happen though, particularly in the new world of super alertness. This was in a day when a person had to take their shoes off to board an airplane, and everyone was a suspect. Even though he was never positively identified, there are two prevailing theories as to why he was never positively named. Either he was unknown by the impersonal world that housed him, or everyone who knew him was too embarrassed to actually fess up. As a truthful and honest narrator I must confess that I feel the former is more likely than the later. As most of the news agencies offered considerable cash prizes for a verifiable name, one must assume that if someone knew him, they’d have said. In fact there were several who came forward and tried to claim they knew the identity, but as we say, his was identity was never verified .

 

            A great number of rumors and stories went around for a little as people tried to figure out his identity, but interest was soon lost because of the glut of costumed characters going around. There just wasn’t the attention span that there had once been. With so many super powered people, it was hard to focus on just one short-lived career. In fact, considering the short amount of time he was operating, he is barely worth mentioning at all. Had he operated for a longer period of time, he might have gained renown and become a story worthy of merit. His short episode meant he was only noticed by the relatively few lives he touched. As it was, he was barely a blip on the mental radar screen.

 

            The problem was it was a bad time to be a blip on the radar screen. The news stations, particularly the cable news, were far too busy beating a massive drum to war to worry about one small tale like this. There had been a large fight at Grand Central that morning between the superhero group The Glams, and the armored villain Dr. Zinge. As it was, this was just another event to add to the growing worry of why New York City seemed to attract more super villains and heroes than most cities.

 

            The news and papers covered the event at the time, but it was quickly eclipsed by the death of Omega, which happened later that year. It is only the most complete record of The Weirdo’s actions that even bothers to mention this small sorry affair. Even then, it’s only given a few sentences. Dr. Herman T. W. Gargoyle’s rather large and extensive ten-volume work on The Weirdo only gives the entire episode two paragraphs. However, Dr. Gargoyle’s work tends to go off on too many socio-political tangents for our liking, and indeed leaves The Weirdo’s story too many times to be a good read.

 

            This sort of widespread of omissions is odd, because without knowing the personal details of those three weeks one cannot understand the events properly. In fact, without understanding this short time, it is impossible to understand The Weirdo at all. The events of those days are of startlingly importance to understanding The Weirdo as a whole and complete person. Of course most writers don’t actually delve as deeply into the actual personality of this sometimes obscure hero as we intend to. They also haven’t got our sources.

 

            The identity of Captain Scourge is only one of the things that are unknown. It is also unknown how he got his fantastic powers. There have been many theories, most of which don’t seriously need to be put forth here. There were the rumors of the government once again attempting to produce a super soldier, even given the disastrous attempts that produced Dr. Nautilus, The Stone Men and the Fanatical Five.

 

            He had probably achieved them through some sort of freak accident, probably involving a particle accelerator. They ALL involved a particle accelerator, at least they used to at one time. There was a time it seems when all you needed to become a super powered hero was something radioactive and a snazzy costume. Magic was once a common excuse, but with the advances of science, explanations for so-called magic have come about. He could have even been one of those mutants, which were very popular in the nineties and still enjoyed a certain amount of popularity at that time. A mutation of some sort would also explain the suddenness of his appearance, and the lack of anyone having seen him before. Most mutants, it is understood, only gain their powers upon reaching puberty.

 

            This much at least is clear to us — he was a very powerful being. He controlled some sort of static electric field, most likely through telekinesis. It might seem lazy, and a bit unimaginative to pull out the old telekinesis routine, but what of it? The truth is that Captain Scourge’s full powers were never really tested and his origins are lost to us forever so we might as well not spend too much time coming up with something good. What is known is that he could fly, shoot bolts of lightning from his fingertips, deflect bullets and cause magnetic waves. Now all of this is perfectly fine and well, good things for a young man to have. All villains need some sort of power right?

 

            Stands to reason that a villain should have some sort of extra power to put him at a higher level than the average thug, but this sort of thing probably wouldn’t have been enough to put him up to Super Villain level. To be a super villain he needed a name and an outfit. He had found a tight black duparoh shirt with a yellow lighting bolt going from the neckline to the waist. Now this is well, bad, but it gets worse when you realize that the lightning bolt was made of yellow sequins and plastic beads. One might wish to ask where someone could get a black shirt with a cartoon bolt across the chest, but really that way madness lies.

 

            He hadn’t had the courage to wear tights, so he went for a pair of baggy silk work out pants. The entire look was reminiscent of a person attending a rave party actually. All this was useful but it wasn’t until he bought one last item in his search for identity that he found his place. It was a cheap, plastic party mask. A shiny black piece of plastic that could be found at any party supply store finished and topped the outfit. It was a sort of domino mask that was held to the head with a thin white rubber band. It wasn’t really meant for regular use, but he would find a more permanent mask later.

 

            And thus, Captain Scourge was born.

 

            Now, it would have been okay if he had just done what others before him had done, i.e. gotten a gang together and robbed a bank. This was the accepted role, as far as he knew, for people like him. Had this been a mid sixties comic book he might have done just that, most likely with a comic touch. Unfortunately, this isn’t a mid sixties comic book, and he had no gang. He was alone, and confused and angry at the world. It wasn’t a world that he could see hope in. It was a world on the brink of an insane war, a world where danger came in one of five colors. It was a world of bullies and girls who laughed at him, a world that promised he’d get passed up for promotions and would end up with the last girl and she would turn out to be gay. In short, it was a world set against him.

 

            It could be construed that he was an intelligent young man, probably one that didn’t fit in with the rest of the crowd. Somebody who just needed a friend to talk to, someone who should have had someone to confide in. If there had been just one friend, maybe things would have turned out differently. However there was no friend to come forward later, because no one came forward. It is quite possible that no one actually associated the young man with anyone they knew. Even if they knew him, they didn’t remember him.

 

            He made his appearance in a way that most super villains wouldn’t even think of doing, or at least not if they thought of having a long career as a media darling. He came from his home, floated through the air, and began exploding things. It started with little things, pigeons, the lights on signs, and bottles. Long tendrils of electricity flew from his fingers and struck things, seemingly at random. It might have been random, or at least as random as the difference between his electrical charge and that of the object struck.

 

            He had been practicing in secret and had learned to direct the flow of electricity from his fingers to cause objects to explode. He could control every whip of energy as it leapt off him towards something he had decided to destroy. The petty vandalism was just a warm up, just a place to start really. He had decided, in his own logical way, to use this power to his own ends. Because lets face it, if given super powers, that’s what most people would do.

 

            No one learns they can fly and deflect bullets and then decides that they have to go save a reporter who gets herself in a new bit of trouble every week. Let’s be realistic for a moment and admit that if anyone of us were Omega, Doris Dame would have been dead a long, long time ago. We’d all have saved her the first twenty, maybe thirty times, but after that we’d all be saying, ‘Look, I’ve got other things to do today.’

 

            We’re all big boys and girls here, and we can admit that if mysteriously given a super power, it could quite easily be us in that duparoh shirt with the sequined lightning bolt. Okay, most of us would have dressed better for the occasion but we wouldn’t suddenly be all altruistic. Anyone of us could suddenly find us in the spot that Captain Scourge was in is my point. There are degrees of how far we would have gone but very few people would suddenly decide that saving the world was the best thing to do.

 

 

March 27th, 1927

1:23 p.m.

 

            Two men left a building and got into a waiting car, the motor of which hadn’t stopped rumbling the entire time they’d been in the shop attending to their business. The car started off before the door closed completely and the tires squealed as it rocketed down the nearly empty street. This caused people to notice the car, but the explosion from the building they had just left averted their attentions. In later days, no two people would be able to agree on any important details about the car. The color, make, type and number of occupants varied greatly from one person to the next.

 

            The explosion was an angry swell of smoke, fire, bricks, glass and sound. The ball of fire leapt out but was overtaken by the cloud of dust almost immediately. The shock wave knocked people over across the street and blew the hat off a young man who watched the explosion with an expression of shock. He wasn’t knocked over, not even when the fist size chunk of brick struck him across the forehead.

 

            He’d had one of those terribly paranoid moments when he thought the building was going to explode, and then it did. His entire family was in there, everyone he knew and loved. As the blood ran down the side of his face, he looked in shock and dismay before running into the building. The heat and smoke soon drove him out, leaving him standing on the side of the road as the building collapsed, feeling helpless and impotent.

 

            As the last wall fell down on top of the already formed rubble, he could feel this soul crawl into a small part of his brain and hide in the back. He could feel his humanity switching off. Some people were going to have to pay for this outrage. That much was clearly evident. He watched as the smoke continued to rise, no matter how much water they sprayed over the broken remains until it had all been extinguished. He watched as they pulled the remains of his friends and his family from the wreckage, and then he turned his back on his past and walked away from it.

© 2012 Autumn Knight Productions

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March 3, 2012 Posted by | Fiction | , | Leave a comment